Partners HealthCare announced on March 14, 2019, that it has fully integrated the Commonwealth of Massachusetts’ Prescription Awareness Tool (MassPAT) directly into its electronic health record (EHR) system, becoming the first health care network to have the tool immediately available to clinicians at the point-of-care and demonstrating a significant step forward in the Commonwealth’s efforts to align health care providers across Massachusetts on a common platform to monitor opioid prescriptions.
“A critical piece of helping to prevent over-prescription of opioids is ensuring that providers have an accurate picture of patients’ prescription history, and MassPAT is an integral part of the Commonwealth’s strategy to support and connect health care providers,” said Massachusetts Commissioner of Public Health Monica Bharel, MD, MPH. “Having the Partners HealthCare system fully integrated and focused on ensuring that its clinicians have access to this tool is an important advancement in our collective efforts to curb the opioid epidemic.”
Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker signed the historic legislation that created MassPAT in 2016, and Massachusetts was one of the first states in the nation to impose a seven-day limit on first-time prescriptions of opioids to patients and mandate that all prescribers check the prescription drug monitoring program (PDMP) before prescribing Schedule II or III substances. Partners’ integration of MassPAT into its Epic EHR system will further assist prescribers by making a patient’s controlled substance prescription information immediately available to them within the patient’s electronic clinical chart.
More than two-thirds of Massachusetts residents who died from an opioid-related overdose between 2011 and 2014 had a legal opioid prescription at some point during that time period, according to a recent report conducted by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Non-fatal overdoses in the state also increased by close to 200 percent between 2011 and 2015.
“We’re arming our providers with more robust, point-of-care access to the state’s prescription drug monitoring program to support safe and responsible treatment of pain, and to better manage substance use disorder,” said Thomas Sequist, MD, MPH, Chief Quality and Safety Officer, Partners. “By viewing a patient’s prescription information in MassPAT, Partners’ providers are better informed about their patient’s medication use, can avoid duplication of drug therapies and can coordinate care by communicating with other prescribers to improve clinical outcomes.”
Since their inception, PDMPs have proven to be effective in improving the use of controlled substances nationwide. However, integrating PDMP information, analytics, insights and resources into EHRs and pharmacy management system workflows is a critical step in the progression of optimizing the use of PDMPs.
The Commonwealth has a statewide license with Appriss Health for its PMP Gateway solution and Partners’ EHR is connected to MassPAT through PMP Gateway. The platform enables access to PDMP information, resources and more within real-time care team workflow to help providers make more informed clinical decisions at the point-of-care.
Fully incorporating MassPAT into the Epic EHR system not only demonstrates Partners commitment to bringing an end to Commonwealth’s opioid crisis, it also speaks to the value of its ongoing investment in an integrated approach to health care. Complex problems often demand highly collaborative solutions – which the Partners system makes possible every day across our network.
To learn more about integrating MassPAT into an eligible health care entity’s EHR or pharmacy management system, please review the MassPAT EHR Integration Guide. Or to start the integration process immediately, please complete the Massachusetts EHR Integration Request Form.